Showgrounds are a more complex subject as there are many forms of both ownership and management. It is worth noting here that Showgrounds as a category often are taken to include Sport and Recreation Grounds which often have common issues in relation to ownership and management as Showgrounds.
The diversity of ownership and management is illustrated by this quotation from a NSW Crown Lands report: “There are 169 showgrounds on Crown land in NSW which accounts for 80% of all showgrounds in NSW. Out of the showgrounds on Crown land, 45% are managed by volunteer reserve trust boards, 45% by local councils and 10% by show societies or the department.”
From the above statement we can conclude that the remaining 20% of NSW Showgrounds are on private (titled) land; other States may have a similar mix; WA for example are almost all on Crown Land, due largely to the fact that “Approximately 92% of Western Australia is Crown land, whether unallocated or subject to reservation, dedication or leasing.” – https://www.austrade.gov.au/land-tenure/Land-tenure/crown-land
The end result on the ground for campers can vary hugely. Showgrounds in larger regional centres such as Kingaroy and Ipswich (pictured) have some form of Show Society or management body with full time office staff and hold the responsibility for booking in the campers; sometimes volunteers appear to collect fees at weekends, as at Ipswich, where the Ipswich Hospital Foundation volunteers do the weekend duties for a donated share of the fees (2019).
In the “middle” of the mix are those Showgrounds who have a caretaker on site in their own RV; these may be entirely volunteer positions in return for free camping or may be paid small amounts for their overall duties. One such is Lowood in the Lockyer Valley, pictured.
At the “bottom” of the scale are those with no on site presence and if there is a fee is usually collected by a volunteer daily or via an Honesty Box system; we should all endeavour to pay the fees for these as the facilities have to be maintained for us all to use, whether it is an amenities block or just mowing the grass. One such is in the small community of Weethalle in NSW where a local volunteer committee member calls to collect fees daily, failing that you can enquire and pay in the village.